In September we finally got around to visiting the Black Mount west of Bridge of Orchy for the first time. Since moving to Edinburgh it's quite a long drive from home to get up that way, so we'd been waiting for good weather... and it didn't disappoint! 20C sunshine at the bottom after a cool start to the day, bright blue skies and clear air.
Setting off along the Abhainn Shira, there was a nice feeling of entering a wilderness:
The turnoff north along the Allt Toaig came much quicker than expected, and I had to check on the map that it was the right place. Clashgour Hut confirmed it.
The first section of path was a bit of a squelchy affair, but things improved as the gradient steepened slightly. After fording a tributary it was a steep pull up the south shoulder of Stob a' Choire Odhair, our first of two Munros today.
Deer were grazing on the distant ridge southeast of the summit:
Up at the summit cairn, there were some fabulous views to be had. Loch Tulla and the Rannoch Wall:
Clach Leathad & Meall a' Bhuiridh:
To the west, the way ahead to Stob Ghabhar beckoned, with the climb onto the Aonach Eagach looking intimidating in the shade. The coires and the great bulk of the hill reminded me a bit of Ben Lui.
Looking back to Stob a' Coire Odhair from the bealach:
Coirein Lochain below to the right:
Getting onto the Aonach Eagach was straightforward enough in the end - hands needed in a couple of places but there's a path of sorts to follow, and little feeling of exposure. Back in the cooling breeze on the ridge:
Approaching the summit:
Over to the left there were good views down Coire na Muic, into which we'd be descending later on:
One last view of Coirein Lochain:
Fantastic views of Ben Cruachan and the hills around Glen Coe from the summit, where we had rare company:
Time to descend, first along the shoulder of Stob Maol and eventually crossing the Allt Coire na Muic at the base of the coire:
We crossed the burn just above the main waterfall, though there seems to be a path on both sides of the stream at this point. Whichever route you take, its a steep, slightly loose, wet and unpleasant descent to the bottom of the falls. Before crossing:
From below the first fall:
The path fords the Allt Toaig (where there was welcome shade) before rejoining the outward route.
An excellent circuit - Stob Gabhar certainly lived up to expectations!
Share your personal walking route experiences in Scotland, and comment on other peoples' reports.
Warning Please note that hillwalking when there is snow lying requires an ice-axe, crampons and the knowledge, experience and skill to use them correctly. Summer routes may not be viable or appropriate in winter. See winter information on our skills and safety pages for more information.